APRIL 28, 2019 – 2nd Sunday of Easter

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APRIL 28, 2019

2nd Sunday of Easter

Sunday of Divine Mercy


“Peace be with you.  As the Father has sent me, so I send you.”

The Easter Season and Praying for an Outpouring of the Holy Spirit

Since the resurrection of Jesus is the greatest event in human history, it deserves to be celebrated with great solemnity.  This is why the Easter Masses, especially the Easter Vigil, are so beautiful and significant as we remember and celebrate this (literally) life-changing event of Jesus’ resurrection.

But that’s not all.  The Church teaches us that it is not enough to celebrate just one weekend, rather, we should celebrate for 50 days.  Thus, the Easter season goes from Easter Sunday through Pentecost Sunday (which this year is June 9th).  I encourage you to celebrate our Easter joy for the full 50 days as we give glory to Jesus Christ our Lord and our God who has redeemed us and given us the hope of resurrection.

As I noted, the Easter season concludes on Pentecost Sunday.  This is another very important day for the Church as we celebrate the outpouring of the Holy Spirit upon the Apostles and the Church.

One excellent way we can celebrate this Easter season and prepare to celebrate Pentecost, is to ask for an outpouring of the Holy Spirit upon ourselves and our parish.  I would invite all of you to please join me in praying the following prayer every day during this Easter season as we approach the feast of Pentecost.  May God graciously send his Holy Spirit upon us to make us strong in our faith, and to become his witnesses in the world.

Come, Holy Spirit,

fill the hearts of your faithful

and enkindle in them the fire of your love.

Send forth your Spirit and they shall be created,

and you shall renew the face of the earth.


Let us pray.

O God, who by the light of the Holy Spirit,

did instruct the hearts of the faithful,

grant us in the same Spirit to be truly wise

and ever to rejoice in His consolation.

Through Christ our Lord.


You are in my daily prayers.

God bless you,

Fr. Nick VanDenBroeke


APRIL 21, 2019 – Easter Sunday

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APRIL 21, 2019

Easter Sunday


Baptism is a Symbol of Christ’s Passion

(From the Jerusalem Catechesis, written in the 4th Century)

You were led down to the font of holy baptism just as Christ was taken down from the cross and placed in the tomb which is before your eyes. Each of you was asked, “Do you believe in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit?”

You made the profession of faith that brings salvation, you were plunged into the water, and three times you rose again. This symbolized the three days Christ spent in the tomb.

As our Saviour spent three days and three nights in the depths of the earth, so your first rising from the water represented the first day and your first immersion represented the first night. At night a man cannot see, but in the day he walks in the light.

So when you were immersed in the water it was like night for you and you could not see, but when you rose again it was like coming into broad daylight. In the same instant you died and were born again; the saving water was both your tomb and your mother.

Solomon’s phrase in another context is very apposite here. He spoke of a time to give birth, and a time to die. For you, however, it was the reverse: a time to die, and a time to be born, although in fact both events took place at the same time and your birth was simultaneous with your death.

This is something amazing and unheard of! It was not we who actually died, were buried and rose again. We only did these things symbolically, but we have been saved in actual fact. It is Christ who was crucified, who was buried and who rose again, and all this has been attributed to us.

We share in his sufferings symbolically and gain salvation in reality. What boundless love for men! Christ’s undefiled hands were pierced by the nails; he suffered the pain. I experience no pain, no anguish, yet by the share that I have in his sufferings he freely grants me salvation.

Let no one imagine that baptism consists only in the forgiveness of sins and in the grace of adoption. Our baptism is not like the baptism of John, which conferred only the forgiveness of sins. We know perfectly well that baptism, besides washing away our sins and bringing us the gift of the Holy Spirit, is a symbol of the sufferings of Christ.

This is why Paul exclaims: Do you not know that when we were baptized into Christ Jesus we were, by that very action, sharing in his death? By baptism we went with him into the tomb.

May you and your family have a very happy and blessed Easter.

You are in my daily prayers.

God bless you,

Fr. Nick VanDenBroeke

APRIL 7, 2019 – 5th Sunday in Lent 

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APRIL 7, 2019

5th Sunday in Lent


“Let the one among you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her.”

Becoming Catholic through RCIA

Most of us were born into a Catholic family and baptized as infants.  So perhaps you’ve never even thought about what the process is to become Catholic for someone who converts later in life.  In today’s column, I thought I would give a little explanation of how this works.

The process of becoming Catholic is called the Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults, or RCIA.  This process includes classes to learn about the faith, and also special rituals to prepare the individual(s) to repent of their sins and welcome Jesus into their life.  The process culminates with the reception of the sacraments, usually at the Easter Vigil.

If an individual is not yet baptized, then he would be Baptized, Confirmed, and receive his First Communion.  If the individual is already a baptized Christian, then he would make his first Confession, followed by Confirmation and First Communion.

Those who are not yet baptized are called Catechumens as they begin the process of RCIA.  RCIA classes usually begin in the Fall.  After several months of studying the Catholic faith, and growing in prayer, the Catechumens are sent to the bishop for the Rite of Election.  “The celebration of the rite of election, which usually coincides with the opening of Lent, also marks the beginning of the period of final, more intense preparation for the sacraments of initiation, during which the elect will be encouraged to follow Christ with greater generosity” (RCIA, 118).  After the Rite of Election, the Catechumens are referred to as the Elect, acknowledging their readiness and sincere desire to become part of the one, holy, catholic, and apostolic Church.

Those who are already baptized as Christians (such as Lutheran or Baptist, etc.) are called Candidates.  They are distinguished from the Catechumens in that they are already part of the family of God and the mystical body of Christ through their baptism, even though they are not yet fully united with the Catholic Church.

If you have been at the 10am Mass the last two weekends, and also this weekend, you have witnessed one of the final parts of the RCIA processes, which is the celebration of the Scrutinies.  “The scrutinies, which are solemnly celebrated on Sundays and are reinforced by an exorcism, are rites for self-searching and repentance and have above all a spiritual purpose.  The scrutinies are meant to uncover, then heal all that is weak, defective, or sinful in the hearts of the elect; to bring out, then strengthen all that is upright, strong, and good.  For the scrutinies are celebrated in order to deliver the elect from the power of sin and Satan, to protect them against temptation, and to give them strength in Christ, who is the way, the truth, and the life.  These rites, therefore, should complete the conversion of the elect and deepen their resolve to hold fast to Christ and to carry out their decision to love God above all” (RCIA, 141).

Only the Elect (those not yet baptized) undergo the Scrutinies, since the Candidates area already baptized.

The Easter Vigil is the greatest liturgical celebration of our faith each year, as we celebrate the rising of Christ from the dead.  Thus, to show the essential connection between Christ’s resurrection from the dead and his giving us new life, the sacraments of initiation—Baptism, Confirmation, and Communion—are celebrated during the Easter Vigil.

To conclude: Have you ever invited someone to consider becoming Catholic?  Especially if you know someone whose spouse is Catholic, I encourage you to reach out to them and invite them to learn more about the Catholic faith.

You are in my daily prayers.

God bless you,

Fr. VanDenBroeke

MARCH 24, 2019 – 3rd Sunday in Lent

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MARCH 24, 2019

3rd Sunday in Lent

Global Solidarity Sunday

 “…it may bear fruit in the future.  If not you can cut it down.”


Tithing Time, Talent, and Treasure

Give to the Most High as he has given to you, generously,

according to your means.” – Sirach 35:12


Tithing refers to giving back to God from the bounty he has given to us.  Everything we have is a gift from God, and so tithing is giving a portion of these blessings back to Him by giving to the Church, the poor, and others in need.  A “tithe” strictly speaking means a “tenth”.  Thus, “tithing” refers to giving a tenth of our income to the Church.

The bible talks a lot about tithing.  In Genesis, we hear Abraham saying to God: “Of everything you give me, I will return a tenth part to you without fail” (Genesis 28:22).  God also promises to bless those who give to him.  We hear the Lord say through the prophet Malachi: “Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. Put me to the test, says the LORD of hosts, and see if I do not open the floodgates of heaven for you, and blessing without measure!” (Malachi 3:10).

Tithing traditionally refers to financial giving, but it is important to also consider how we give our entire lives.  Thus, we should consider how we tithe our Time, Talent, and Treasure.

Tithing our time – Giving God time in prayer.  Making time for God every day.

Tithing our talents – Serving the Church, the poor, and others in need.  Using our talents for God’s glory.

Tithing our treasure – Financial giving to support the needs of the Church.

Here are some ideas for giving of our talents in serving:

  • Mass ministries – Lector, Eucharistic Minister, Usher, Server, Sacristan, Greeter, Choir
  • Teach Religious Education classes on Wednesday nights
  • Bring Communion to the Villages on Sunday mornings
  • Organize and run a bible study or small group
  • Participate in the Knights of Columbus
  • Participate in the Council of Catholic Women
  • Volunteer at the Lonsdale Area Food Shelf
  • Volunteer at a Pregnancy Life Care Center
  • Clean the church
  • Assist with donut Sunday
  • Be part of a welcoming committee for new parishioners
  • Work at the Bazaar
  • Offer your skills of sewing, or building, or fixing things at the parish

Please talk to me if you can help serve in any of these ways.  I’m excited to think of the potential for our parish if we all step up in tithing our time, talent, and treasure.

Please also see the inserts in today’s bulletin about tithing financially.

You are in my daily prayers.

God bless you,

Fr. VanDenBroeke

MARCH 17, 2019 – 2nd Sunday in Lent

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MARCH 17, 2019

2nd Sunday in Lent 

“This is my chosen Son; Listen to Him.”

New Stations of the Cross Display

As you come into church through the main doors, you will now notice a new addition to our narthex area: A beautiful Stations of the Cross display.

This was designed, built, and installed by Dave Malecha (brother of Adeline Malecha).

Here is a short history of these particular Stations, written by Betty Vosejpka:

“In 1912 when Immaculate Conception school was opened, three Sisters of the School Sisters of Notre Dame from the Mankato Province were the first teachers.  These Stations of the Cross were originally in the chapel in the school.  In 1959 when the convent was built and eight Sisters moved into it, these stations were put in the chapel there.  The convent was remodeled in 2003 after the last of the School Sisters of Notre Dame left.  The chapel was designated as a meeting room and the Stations were taken down and put into storage.”

For some time, Adeline had been thinking about what we could do with these old stations, and finally we decided it would be wonderful to be able to display them again.  I’m grateful for Adeline’s idea of creating a display case to put them in.

I hope you enjoy the new display, and perhaps it will even bring back a few memories for some of you who may have seen these stations hanging in the old school chapel or in the nuns’ convent chapel.

You are in my daily prayers.

God bless you,

Fr. Nick VanDenBroeke




MARCH 10, 2019 – 1st Sunday in Lent

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MARCH 10, 2019

1st Sunday in Lent

 “You shall not put the Lord, your God, to the test.”


Stations of the Cross

The Stations of the Cross consist of 14 moments of the life of Jesus during his passion and death.

Some people are able to make a pilgrimage at some point in their life to the Holy Land, and actually follow the path Jesus walked through his suffering and death.  In other words, they can make the Stations of the Cross in the actual place where they happened.  I’ve had this wonderful privilege, and it is very powerful to walk where Christ walked, and pray where Christ suffered and died.

Many, however, are never able to make this pilgrimage in person, and certainly not regularly.  For this reason, churches began creating 14 memorials to represent the locations where these events in Jesus’ life happened, and the faithful may walk along these memorials, or stations, in memory of walking along with Jesus.  Thus, when we pray the Stations of the Cross, we spiritually walk and pray with Jesus through the streets of Jerusalem.

We can pray the Stations of the Cross during any time of the year, but it is particularly appropriate for the season of Lent when we meditate more specifically on our sinfulness which led Christ to undergo his passion and death.  We are familiar with praying the Stations of the Cross at church as a community, but we can also meditate on the stations of the cross anytime during our prayer time.  You can easily lookup the Stations of the Cross online.

Catholics are familiar with the idea of “giving something up” for Lent.  Giving up things like chocolate are good for us because it helps us grow in virtue and offer this small penance to Jesus as a sacrifice.  I encourage not only “giving something up”, but also “doing something extra” for Jesus during Lent.  It could be praying more, saying the rosary, going to daily Mass once a week, etc.  For the last several years, I have made a commitment during Lent to do the Stations of the Cross every day.  It is powerful to meditate daily during Lent on Jesus’ suffering and death, and to think of how he did that for me.

Whether or not you also try to pray the stations of the cross daily, I do hope you attend the Stations of the Cross here at church on the Fridays of Lent.

During the Stations of the Cross on Fridays, we will have a time of Eucharistic Adoration.  I will expose the Eucharist, then proceed to do the Stations as usual, and then conclude with Benediction.

I’ll conclude with the prayer of St. Alphonsus Liguori for the Stations of the Cross (which I love and pray daily in my own prayer time).

I love you Jesus my love.  I love you more than myself.  I repent with my whole heart from ever having offended you.  Never let me offend you again, grant that I may love you always, and then do with me as you will.

You are in my daily prayers.

God bless you,

Fr. Nick VanDenBroeke


MARCH 3, 2019 – 8th Sunday in Ordinary Time

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MARCH 3, 2019

8th Sunday in Ordinary Time

 “A good tree does not bear rotten fruit, nor does a rotten tree bear good fruit.”

Midnight Watch

I want to invite all the men of Immaculate Conception to a special night of prayer for our parish and families.  The event is called the Midnight Watch.  It is an hour of prayer once a month from midnight to 1:00 am on a Friday night into Saturday morning.

The idea of the Midnight Watch is to invite the men of the parish to set aside one hour of prayer every month for their family and our parish.  The reason it is held at midnight is

1) because there are generally no scheduling conflicts at this time (except sleeping), and

2) to give men an opportunity to sacrifice this time of sleep for the sake of their family and our parish.

I have done this event at a couple of my previous parishes as well, and it is very rewarding to gather at church once a month with a good group of men who want to spend an hour in prayer for their family and parish.

I encourage all the men of Immaculate Conception to attend the Midnight Watch, even if only once or a few times a year.

It is usually the 2nd Friday night of the month, here is the schedule:

March 8th

April 5th   (1st Friday)

May 10th

June 14th

Let me know if you would like more info or would like to be on the email notification list.


You are in my daily prayers.

God bless you,

Fr. VanDenBroeke

Confirmation 2019 – Congratulations Confirmands!

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Four confirmands and their families braved the February snowstorm to celebrate Confirmation on Sunday, February 10 at the St. Paul Cathedral. Archbishop Hebda presided over the beautiful Confirmation Mass. Congratulations and God Bless the newly confirmed members of our parish family:

Joseph Daniel Cienciwa

Olivia Helen Gergen

Alexis Ann Gramley

Adam Michael Malecha

Below is a picture, taken together with confirmands from St. Nicholas Church in Elko.

FEBRUARY 24, 2019 – 7th Sunday in Ordinary Time 

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FEBRUARY 24, 2019

7th Sunday in Ordinary Time 

“For the measure with which you measure will in turn be measured out to you.”

Catholic Services Appeal

Last year, the Catholic Services Appeal disbursed $8,372,773 to the many wonderful ministries in our Archdiocese.

The 2019 anticipated ministry payout amounts / “ministry goal amounts” are the following. Actual payout amounts will depend upon how many dollars are brought in through this year’s campaign:

Abria Pregnancy Resources: $50,000

American Indian Ministry: $200,000

ACCW: $25,585

Campus Ministry – Newman Center: $264,000

Campus Ministry – Saint Paul’s Outreach: $11,000

Catholic Charities: $700,000

Deaf Ministry: $39,733

Catholic Elementary School Support / Scholarships:

$1,703,125, (with every Catholic elementary school

within the Archdiocese receiving some funding.)

Office of Evangelization: $150,000

Catholic High School Scholarships: $800,000

Hospital Chaplains: $600,000

Latino Ministry: $350,000

Marriage, Family & Life: $256,000

Parishes (Rebates): $1,840,000

Prison Ministry: $32,000

Rachel’s Vineyard-Twin Cities: $26,875

St. Vincent de Paul Society: $50,000

The Seminaries of Saint Paul (SJV & SPS): $1,063,807

Venezuelan Mission: $110,000

Youth and Young Adult Ministry: $64,000

I am so proud to announce that last year our parish met and surpassed our goal of $11,018 for the first time in at least 6 years!  This means we will receive a rebate from the CSA for 25% of what our parish donated.  That means we should be receiving a check for almost $3,000!

Last year, we had a total of 114 donors from our parish, averaging a gift of $104 each.

This year, our goal is the same amount as last year, so $11,018.

Please join me in making a gift to the Catholic Services Appeal again this year.  Thank you for your support of these wonderful ministries in our local church.

You are in my daily prayers.

God bless you,

Fr. Nick VanDenBroeke

FEBRUARY 17, 2019 – 6th Sunday in Ordinary Time

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FEBRUARY 17, 2019

6th Sunday in Ordinary Time

  “Rejoice and leap for joy on that day! …Your reward will be great in heaven.”


 Congratulations and God Bless 

the Newly Confirmed Members of Our Parish Family


Joseph Daniel Cienciwa

Son of Michael & Allison Cienciwa


Olivia Helen Gergen

Daughter of Bradley & Jaime Gergen


Alexis Ann Gramley

Daughter of Todd & Bernadette Gramley


Adam Michael Malecha

Son of Steven & Heather Malecha

These students received the Sacrament of Confirmation

from Archbishop Bernard Hebda

on Sunday, February 10, 2019 at the Cathedral of St. Paul

5 Things Women Need to Know About Men

This month’s Lighthouse CD is 5 Things Women Need to Know about Men by Dr. Allen Hunt.

While in the Valentine’s Day mood, I wanted to offer a CD for couples this month.

What in the world is your husband thinking?  What really makes him tick?  In this talk, Dr. Allen Hunt shares the five things women most need to know about men.  Simple, helpful, and inspiring wisdom to enrich your marriage and relationships.

Dr. Allen Hunt is a nationally known speaker and bestselling author.  He leads a powerful marriage seminar titled: Passion and Purpose for Marriage, and this talk is part of that conference.

If it would be easier for you to listen to this (or any other Lighthouse CD talk) as an MP3, rather than on CD, please talk to me.

You are in my daily prayers.

God bless you,

Fr. Nick VanDenBroeke



























You are in my daily prayers.

May God bless you,

Fr. Nick VanDenBroeke




Please see the Bulletin insert from the LNMV CEC this weekend!

Feb 16-17  CSA Video/flyer


Baptism Congratulations


to Jacob & Jennifer (Mike) Rhein

on the Baptism of their daughter, Nora Rose

on Sunday, February 17, 2019


Love is patient, love is kind.

 It is not jealous, it is not pompous,
It is not inflated, it is not rude,

 it does not seek its own interests,
it is not quick-tempered,

 it does not brood over injury,
it does not rejoice over wrongdoing

but rejoices with the truth.
It bears all things, believes all things,

hopes all things, endures all things.

Love never fails.


Prayer for Married Couples

Almighty and eternal God,

You blessed the union of husband and wife
So that we might reflect the union of Christ with his Church:
look with kindness on us. Renew our marriage covenant.
Increase your love in us, and strengthen our bond of peace
so that we may always rejoice in the gift of your blessing.

We ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen.



Grant me, O Lord my God,
A mind to know you, A heart to seek you,
Wisdom to find you, Conduct pleasing to you,
Faithful perseverance in waiting for you,
And a hope of finally embracing you.



“Eternal Father,

I offer you the most precious blood of the Divine Son, Jesus,

in union with the Masses said throughout the world today,

for all the Holy Souls in Purgatory, for sinners everywhere,

for sinners in the universal Church, for those in my home

and in my family. Amen”

-St. Gertrude the Great

“Lent is a fitting time for self-denial;

we would do well to ask ourselves what we can give up

and enrich others by our own poverty.” –Pope Francis



Please note that our IC-CCW will be receiving funds from the CARDBOARD RECYCLING at Mackenthun’s during the months of February and March!


SAVE THE DATE – Totus Tuus is coming to our 3 parishes

the week of June 23 through 29

– More information will follow…

TOTUS TUUS is a fun and energetic parish based summer catechetical program, for both grade school age children & junior & senior high school youth.


Teaching Parish Seminarian

Mitchell McLaughlin

December 8-9

January – NONE

February 16-17

April 14-15 also Triduum

May 11-12





FAST AND ABSTINENCE is to be observed on Ash Wednesday and Good Friday. These are days of fast, and abstinence from meat. Fasting is having only one full meal, with the option of also having two smaller meals that do not equal a full meal, for all Catholics between the ages of 18 and 59, inclusive.


All Fridays of Lent are days of abstinence from meat for all who have reached their 14th birthday.


We are once again participating in the Catholic Relief Service (CRS) program “Operation Rice Bowl”. The www.CRSRiceBowl.org website is full of stories and tips! During Lent, we are asked to occasionally eat the sort of meal people in poor countries have, and place the money saved in the rice bowl (available in the back of church). You may also use the envelope included in your giving packet. At the end of Lent, this money will be sent to CRS for its work in helping the poor in mission lands.


This Lent, join the Walk with Jesus Lenten Challenge. The walk is a twice-weekly

reflection program (beginning March 5th) that places a special emphasis on the

Way of the Cross. It is designed to help people focus on their spirituality so they

can grow in faith during these 40 days of Lent.

Join the challenge by visiting www.4lpi.com/LentReflections today.



~~Franciscan Retreats & Spirituality Center-Prior Lake~~

To register or for more info: www.franciscanretreats.net or 952-447-2182.

~~Christ the King Retreat Center~~

621 First Ave. South, Buffalo, MN (763) 682-1394 –www.kingshouse.com

~~Relevant Radio 1330AM~~                     

Program your dial to Catholic radio-Listen online at www.relevantradio.com

~~Retrouvaille ~~

Call (651) 464-5855, or visit www.helpourmarriage.com, or www.tcr-mn.org

~~Faribault Area Hospice ~~

Groups meet at District One Hospital lower level. Call 507-332-4837 for info

~~Area Regional Bereavement Support Group~~

St. Wenceslaus Church, 215 East Main St, in New Prague.

For more information call Deacon Bob Wagner at 952-758-0463.

~ Parkinson’s Support Group ~

4th Tuesday of every month from 1:00-2:30 PM at the New Prague Public Library.

For more information contact Betty Tupy 952-758-3924.



Dave & Mary McFadden 744-5341




Pope Francis’ 2019 Monthly Intentions


Evangelization – Christian